Monday, October 01, 2012
Ed's Getting There....I Think
It's true Ed is now better placed than previous years in that: the party is (still) relatively united; he has a ten point lead in the polls; and has had a few notable 'wins' over leading the attack on Murdoch over phone hacking and establishing an influential distinction between 'predator and producer'(responsible and irresponsible) forms of capitalism. His failure to 'break through' in way Blair and Cameron managed tends to encourage comparisons with failed Tory leaders like Hague and IDS, both of whom were replaced after losing elections rather badly. Are we witnessing the early stages of a Labour IDS? This is the question party members almost dare not ask.
Some suggest- mostly the right-wing columns- that his relations with colleagues could be better. It's true that his shadow chancellor, Ed Balls is still loathed by many as a thuggish clone of Gordon Brown-the Lib Dems suggest he would have to go in a Lib-Lab coalition- but he dismisses this as rubbish, pointing out that they have worked happily together for the past two decades. It might be significant however that it is Miliband who is leading on the possible statutory separation of retail and investment banking as recommended by the Vickers Report.
But does he appear as credible prime minister in waiting? Well, the polls say not, by 63 to 28%, a major headache for him and his aides. He is also suggests we accept that this man is a serious 'north London intellectual' who is genuinely interested in ideas rather than a grandstanding PR obsessed celebrity politician. I tend to agree.
The election of David Miliband would have changed all of this. Bad own goal for the left. I almost cannot believe thay were so stupid as to do it.
Of course I hope you are wrong but I would be a fool to deny your case is a strong one. Strengthened by the fact that several authoritative sources- Economist, BCC and others, detect an ending of the recession. But Ed has been underestimated in the past, including by me, so I'm just hoping his calmness under fire and fertile intellect will eventually win through over the flashy Blair-style attributes of Cameron.
Thanks for your comment
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